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  • Writer's pictureMpho Mahlangu

The Bold & The Beautiful: First-Ever BMW XM Headed To South Africa In 2023

BMW have just taken the covers off of the much-anticipated high-performance XM and it promises to be a game-changer. The XM also happens to be the first BMW M original since the legendary M1.

Exterior Design

The exterior design of the XM will undoubtedly be one of the biggest talking points - as has been the case with many BMW models of late. Up front, the XM features slim headlights which flank the distinctive BMW kidney grille with gold-colored surrounds. Large air intakes are another defining feature of the front end.

The side of the XM features a gold accent band which is reminiscent of the black strip which was found on the M1. Furthermore, the theme of reminiscence continues thanks to BMW logos engraved into the flat rear window and louvred structure of the sculptural taillights. 21-inch alloy wheels are standard fitment, with alloy wheels measuring up to 23-inches optionally available.

Interior Design

The cockpit and front seats of the XM have been designed around an active driving experience. Taking center stage is the BMW curved display with M-specific display content. The display measures 12.3-inches for the instrument cluster and 14.9-inches for the infotainment display. Standard fitment includes BMW Live Cockpit Professional, M multi-function seats, knee pads for added comfort, an M-specific leather steering wheel and shift lights for the curved display and head-up display.

Niceties in the rear include heated backrests, specifically designed cushions, a sculptural headliner with a three-dimensional prism structure, photo mount-style border and 100 LED units for illumination. Four different trims are on offer for customizing the interior along with new Vintage leather for the upper sections of the instrument panel and door panels.

Standard fitment includes ambient lighting, four-zone automatic climate control, Harman Kardon Surround Sound System and the Travel & Comfort system. Optionally available features include the Bowers & Wilkins Diamond Surround System with 1,500-watt amplifier and an additional four speakers in the roof area.


The BMW XM is the first-ever M high performance vehicle with an electrified drive system. The M Hybrid drive system comprises of a 4.4-litre M TwinPower Turbo V8 engine which delivers an overall output of 480kW. The combustion engine produces up to 360kW, with the electric drive system delivering up to 145kW. The V8 motor is aided by an electric motor integrated into the 8-speed M Steptronic transmission.

Overall torque output sits at 800Nm, with the combustion engine producing up to 650Nm and the electric motor delivering up to 280Nm. A pre-gearing stage increases the electric motor's maximum torque to 450Nm at the transmission input. The 0-100km/h sprint is achieved in just 4.3 seconds.

Fitted to the BMW XM is a 25.7kWh lithium-ion high-voltage battery which allows for electric driving at speeds up to 140km/h at a claimed WLTP range of up to 88km. The battery enables AC charging at up to 7.4kW.

BMW XM Label Red

The most powerful road-legal M vehicle - the XM Label Red will be added to the model range in 2023. On offer will be 550kW, of which up to 430kW will be delivered by the combustion engine and up to 145kW will be delivered by the electric drive system. A maximum system torque of 1000Nm will be on offer, with up to 750Nm being delivered by the combustion engine and up to 280Nm delivered by the electric drive system.


A balance of comfort and dynamism is achieved thanks to M-specific tuning as well as customization in the M setup menu. The chassis design comprises a double-wishbone front axle and a five-link rear axle with specially tuned kinematic and elastokinematic properties. Standard fitment includes adaptive M suspension Professional including electronically controlled dampers and active roll stabilisation with 48V electric motors and Active Roll Control. A first for a BMW M model is Integral Active Steering.

Driver Assistance Technology

Driver assistance systems are plenty in the BMW XM and the following are fitted as standard: Driving Assistant Professional, which comprises Front Collision Warning, Lane Departure Warning including lane return with steering assistance, the Evasion Assistant, Alertness Assistant and Speed Limit Info system. Furthermore, it add Active Cruise Control with Stop & Go function with a host of other features, including the Steering and Lane Control Assistant, traffic light recognition and automatic Speed Limit Assist.

In addition to the Reversing Assistant is Parking Assistant Plus which comprises the functions Parking View, front and rear Panorama View and 3D View.

The first-ever BMW XM is expected to launch in South Africa from Q2 2023 however it will be on display at the 2022 BMW M Fest at Kyalami Grand Prix Circuit.

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